Start Spending Less + Part 1 – Alcohol

OK – you think you know this stuff. Here is where we say write a budget of what you are going to spend and then don’t spend more.

Pffff – I don’t think budgets work. I HATE feeling that I am not in control of my money – I’ve worked hard for it, I should be able to do what I want with it.

 Also something always comes up you didn’t plan for – see the doctor, service the car, etc.

 In this series I’ll show some of my ideas for reducing your spending.

 Thinking about spending can be a bit similar to a diet or a gym workout plan – you have to be realistic.

 You can’t just say – I’m not going to eat for 2 days, or I’m going to workout every day.  Number 1 – its just not going to happen, Number 2 – even if you do achieve it in the short term – you feel miserable.

 YOU have to decide what could work for YOU.

 For example my friend spends money on coffees but loves catching up with friends. She sees her coffees as an investment in her relationship with her friends. So she would pick other things that she could spend less on.

 Going Out -Spending Less on Alcohol

 What?? What does that have to do with money.?

 Well you have a few drinks, then a few more, you buy another packet of cigarettes, then you buy a kebab and get a taxi home. Suddenly the next day there is nothing left in your wallet.

 Suggestions:

 Staying In:

 Obviously staying in for a few drinks can be a lot cheaper than going out. And you actually get to talk to your friends rather than yelling over the music.

 Ideas: BBQ, Movie night, Sports, board games, etc.

 Going Out: 

  1. Buy drinks for friends but don’t be in the round (if you can avoid it!)

I have some friends who do rounds and some who don’t. If your friends are like mine – you drink more in rounds. When you get to the pub – be the first to ask who wants a drink.

 When one of the people you bought a drink for asks if you want a drink in the next round say no.

 Those friends you bought a drink for will probably still buy you a drink some point in the night or at a later date (and if not who cares?). But this way you are drinking to your plan.

 Even if those friends might tease you at first – they will love you forever[1] if you can drive them home at the end of the night.

 Also if you are meeting friends and you are late – you might have missed the round, or your friends have had a few drinks so won’t be drinking as quickly if you do end up joining the round.

 2.  Have something to eat BEFORE going out

 Even if it is a pack of chips – if you are full before going out you are less likely to drink too much and less likely to splurge on the kebab at the end of the night (see point 5)

 3. Have a drink BEFORE going out.

 In my opinion – this one doesn’t work because then you end up spending the same amount – because you have too much to drink and buy drinks for everyone.

 4. Mix it up

 Go to see a live act, go clubbing, check out different pubs, have dinner first.

Anything to reduce the number of drinks sitting at one place

5.Wait until you get home to eat

That kebab NEVER tastes as good in your stomach the next day. So why pay $10 for it?

 6. Catch public transport home

 Catching the train or night-rider is a lot cheaper than catching a cab. If you are a clubber – maybe you should stay out until the first train in the morning.

 Even if alone – there are taxi ranks where you can  share cabs with people (girls may feel less comfortable doing this).

 7.Control how much you smoke

 Cigarettes taste a lot better with alcohol. So take a limited amount of cigarettes out. Tell your friends not to give you any when you ask!

 8.Drive

 If you drive – you can’t drink as much (or at all if you are on your Ps). Depending on the price of drinks – it can be cheaper to drive (especially if you can get free parking).

 Please comment if you have other suggestions/what you like/hate about these ideas.


[1] Or “be your best mate” or  whatever drunken gibberish they say

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